AMHERST, MA – The Amherst College women's lacrosse team failed to get back on the winning track, as the No. 6 Lord Jeffs fell to No. 12 Babson College in a back-and-forth non-conference battle. Amherst's second consecutive loss of the season moves the Jeffs to 6-3 overall, while the Beavers improve to 9-2.
Amherst gained control of the first draw and wasted no time, as senior quad-captain Alyssa Briody (Hopewell, NJ) set up junior Maddie Hoeg (Shoreham, NY) for the first goal less than one minute into the game. Babson got a sense of déjà vu 45 seconds later when Briody and Hoeg connected for the second time, giving the Jeffs an early 2-0 lead.
The Beavers got on the board after five minutes of action when first-year Anna Collins assisted on junior Anita Martignetti's 25th goal of the season. Sophomore Amy Craig (Denver, CO) netted her 26th goal of the season five minutes later, with Hoeg picking up the assist for her third point of the game.
Babson was given the first free position attempt of the night, and Martignetti made it count to cut her team's deficit to one goal. Martignetti was given another free position attempt six minutes later, bouncing her shot past Amherst goalie Linda McEvoy (Rochester, NY) to tie the game at 3-3, forcing Amherst to call a timeout with 12:25 on the clock.
Briody picked up her third assist of the game just 69 seconds out of the timeout when she set up Craig's second goal of the evening, but the Jeffs' lead disappeared when a costly turnover in their defensive end led directly to a Collins unassisted goal. It only took 24 more seconds for the Beavers to net their fifth goal and take their first lead of the game, as first-year Kaitlyn Pettengill converted for another free position goal.
Babson made one final charge in the final minute of the first half, but senior tri-captain Ashley Platt's shot sailed high as the buzzer sounded, sending the Beavers into intermission with a 5-4 advantage.
Collins ripped a shot from close range midway through the half, but McEvoy came up with a big save to preserve the lead. The Beavers kept the pressure on, however, as Martignetti sent in a pass from behind the net to find a streaking Platt, who tied the game at 6-6 with a quick catch-and-release that found its way to the back of the net. Craig got things going in the second half when she sent a hard shot low past Babson keeper Jennie Williams' right side to tie the game at 5-5 four minutes and 13 seconds into the frame. The second goal of the half did not come for another five minutes and 25 seconds when Craig chalked up her fourth tally with the assist going to Briody, giving the lead back to Amherst with 20 minutes to play.
Martignetti was given another free position opportunity with nine minutes remaining in the half, but McEvoy once again came up with a big save to keep the game in a deadlock. Another costly Amherst turnover in the Jeffs' defensive end, however, allowed Platt to take control and find Martignetti sprinting toward the goal to score her fourth goal of the game, resulting in another Amherst timeout with just eight minutes to play.
The Beavers regained possession and were able to work nearly four minutes off the clock before Collins took a shot that sailed high and wide, but possession was given right back to Babson. Amherst finally got the ball back with two minutes to play, but the Jeffs quickly turned the ball over with an offsides call.
A Babson turnover gave Amherst one final run with 1:00 showing on the clock, but the Jeffs once again could not hold on to the ball for long enough to work any offense, as the Beavers ran out the clock and picked up the 7-6 upset.
McEvoy and Williams each played the full 60 minutes, with McEvoy picking up four saves in net and Williams stopping three shots. Craig led Amherst with four goals, while Hoeg added a pair and Briody assisted on three. Martignetti led the Babson attack with four goals and one assist.
Amherst did not have a free position shot all night, while Babson converted on three attempts in the first half alone. The key of the second half for the Beavers was their decrease in turnovers, as they committed only seven compared to 17 in the first 30 minutes.
The Lord Jeffs return to action Saturday for a home NESCAC match-up with archrival Williams College at 11 a.m.